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Batman returns: Prequel TV series to focus on Commissioner Jim Gordon

Fox wins the rights to Gotham, a new show from the creator of The Mentalist

Fox has won the bidding war for a new TV drama series set in the Batman universe.

Gotham, from The Mentalist creator Bruno Heller and Warner Bros TV, will follow Commissioner Jim Gordon and the villains that terrorise the city, according to Deadline.

In Chris Nolan's recent Batman film trilogy, Gary Oldman took the role of Gordon, winning considerable acclaim in the process.

He’s unlikely to reprise his portrayal of the character, as Gotham is focusing on the popular Detective Comics characters’ origin stories in the new series.

Though the character is popularly referred to as Commissioner Jim Gordon, the younger James is likely to still be a detective in the Gotham City Police Department in the series.

The announcement that Fox had won the rights to the show came on the same day as rival Marvel series Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. aired on ABC to largely positive reviews.

Warner Bros and Fox will be hoping that Gotham is able to capitalise on the success of Batman Begins, The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises, the latter two of which scored billion-dollar box office grosses.

Executives showed their confidence in Gotham by handing it a straight-to-series order, meaning producers can skip the rigmarole of making a pilot.

It could be the first DC live-action series to create the same dark, sinister mood of the comics and the Nolan films.

However, Birds of Prey, the last live-action drama to be set in Gotham, was cancelled in 2003 after just one series.